||The album is often called the BB "soul" album.
The BB, for the first time since 1963, played on most of the instrumental
tracks on the album.
There is significant evidence that even after Smiley Smile was released,
Capitol asked Brian to finish Smile. Smiley Smile was released as Brother
9001 and Wild Honey was slated to be Brother 9003. What was going to be 9002
is unknown, but one strong possibility, judging from Capitol´s internal
memos of 1967, is that it was supposed to be Smile.
Wild Honey - Oct. 13, 1967
On Oct.13, Capitol assigned a project number to a new Beach Boys album, already
titled WILD HONEY and planned for release as Brother ST9003. Early in November,
information was submitted to Capitol about the album. The originallineup
Wild Honey/Here Comes The Night/Let the Wind Blow/I Was Made to Love Her/The
Letter (live version)/Darlin'/A Thing or TwolAren't You Glad/Cool Cool Water/Game
of Love/Lonely Days.
Certainly a muchly different album, possibly one that wouldn't have seemed
quite so "thrown down." Note that with the exception of "Been Way Too Long"
(which Brian must have considered unfinished since he would return to it
the following July), "With a Little Help from My Friends" (which Bruce says
was never intended for release) and the untitled song, that's everything
the group had just recorded. Curiously, a I2th track, "Honey Get Home" (possibly
the untitled song?) was listed, but crossed out. A marginal note indicates
the first five songs would have been on Side 1 of the album, leaving six
songs for Side 2. The album still was designated Brother 9003. Even more
importantly, the album was to be credited "Produced by BRIAN WLLSON"! Then
something happened. I can't say exactly what, but I can pinpoint the occurrence
as between Nov. 3 (when they completed the tracks for the original WILD HONEY
lineup) and Nov. 8 (when they started recording additional songs). And the
result was that Brother Records died and Brian's original conception of the
WILD HONEY album was altered. A Nov. 15 Capitol memo referred to the WILD
HONEY album as Capitol 2859. The track list was revised, dropping "The Letter,"
"Cool Cool Water," "Game of Love" and "Lonely Days," and adding a1l five
songs recorded in the previous week. And perhaps most significantly, the
production credit was changed to "Produced by THE BEACH BOYS."
I think your speculation that "Game of Love" may have been a cover of the
Mindbenders hit is quite plausible. As for "Lonely Days", there's some kind
of irony that the Bee Gees also did a song with that title when they were
attempting to "toughen up" their image in the early seventies. Also, given
Brian's penchant for recycling songs and song fragments, I began to wonder
if the bridge to "Crack At Your Love" may have had its origins in this long
lost Wild Honey track. "Crack" is credited to Brian and Al Jardine, and there
are a number of other songs of the late sixties that Brian wrote with Al.
When the WILD HONEY album was completed in November, Brian and the group
did not again enter the studio until March of the next year.